Preparing an Emergency Kit
The first component of being prepared for disasters is to have an emergency supply kit for each person in your home. The supply kits should be stocked with enough items to last for three days.
Important items to include in an emergency kit include:
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation.
- Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food.
- Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both.
- Flashlight and extra batteries.
- First Aid kit.
- Whistle to signal for help.
- Dust mask, to help filter contaminated air.
- Plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal air leaks if you shelter-in-place.
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation.
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.
- Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food).
- Local maps.
- Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger.
In addition to the basic items, you should also include important medications, supplies for pets, important documents, hygiene items and a change of clothing.
You can also keep household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper on hand. When diluted nine parts water to one part bleach, bleach can be used as a disinfectant. Or in an emergency, you can use it to treat water by using 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.
Don’t Forget the Pets
What your pet emergency kit should include
- Container of water
- One week supply of canned or dry food
- Can opener
- Dishes for food and water
- Any medication that your pet requires
- Plastic bags for cleaning up after your pet
- Kitty litter
- A blanket or towel
- A familiar toy
- Medical records
- A backpack or duffle bag for storing the above items